pregnancy

The 5 things you need for your new baby (and the 5 things you probably don’t).

Transport for NSW
Thanks to our brand partner, Transport for NSW

Preparing for a new baby’s arrival is an exciting, but overwhelming time. There are a lot of decisions to be made and frankly, there’s just so much that needs to be bought.

I tried really hard not to get carried away with it all when I was expecting my son, but my husband still had to drag me away from a $40 electronic snot sucker (note: I have never regretted not buying that).

Having been through it all now, I’m on the verge of passing on our beloved baby cot (sob). Looking back, these are the things I would definitely look for if we have a second child:

1. Wraps that zip.

I failed at wrapping my baby from day one. I just couldn’t master it. My tiny son would wriggle out and end up with the thing wrapped around his face, which really isn’t ideal.

The moment I switched to an all in one wrap that zipped up, life got easier. Those things aren’t cheap, but they are worth their weight in gold. I ended up with three and I couldn’t have gotten through the first six months without them.

2. Burp cloths.

And lots of them. Small babies are milky puke factories for weeks on end. If you can’t catch what comes out, at least you can have a cloth on hand to wipe it up.

Buy a stack – you’re going to need them.

preparing for a baby
An endless supply of burp cloths ensures this moment stays adorable. Image via iStock.

3. A safe and correctly fitted child car seat.

This is a no-brainer. A child who is not correctly restrained is up to seven times more likely to be seriously injured in a crash. Your child car seat needs to meet Australian Standards and it’s a good idea to have it installed by someone who knows what they are doing. There are more than 300 Authorised Restraint Fitting Stations across NSW who can help. Importantly, expensive doesn’t always mean safer when it comes to selecting a child car seat. Speak to a professional and get the right advice so that you know your child will be safe and comfortable from birth and as they grow.

Check out childcarseats.com.au for more information on the safest child car seat options and to find your nearest Authorised Restraint Fitting Station.

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preparing for a baby
“Check out childcarseats.com.au for more information on the safest child car seat options and to find your nearest Authorised Restraint Fitting Station.” Image via iStock.

4. A wearable baby carrier.

My son’s dad nominates this as his favourite item from our son’s first year. It helps ease the shock of suddenly having to do everything with a baby in tow. You’re able to keep your hands free while still holding your gorgeous warm bundle close to your heart.

preparing for a baby
A favourite of dads everywhere. Image via iStock.

5. Nappy cream.

Fact: small bubbas have sensitive bums.

Once you have found a nappy cream that works, stock up. Rashes can come up suddenly (sometimes thanks to teething – weird, I know) and there’s nothing worse than having nothing on hand to soothe the discomfort.

So, those are the things you definitely need.

Here are a few that you really shouldn’t waste your money on:

1. Fancy, Expensive Massage Oil.

You’ll be touching your baby all day – you don’t need a super, special oil to do it with. If you do want to massage your baby, some gentle (and inexpensive) moisturising cream or oil will do the trick, or you can even use olive oil, which is recommended as a non-toxic option.

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2. The world’s best pram.

Rookie mistake – hubby and I splurged on a $600 pram but the decision backfired for two reasons. Firstly, it was a heck of a job to get it in and out of any shops or cafes. I knocked down more than one handbag display in my attempts to manoeuvre through small shops.

Secondly, my son pretty much hated his pram from the moment he was able to sit up. He preferred being close to me in a carrier and would scream whenever I strapped him into his stroller. In the end I abandoned it completely and now it’s on the deck collecting dust – making me feel guilty every time I look at it.

3. Countless baby manuals.

A lot of baby books are written with a single agenda in mind. They’ll end up frustrating you as you try to force your baby to conform to a pattern of sleeping or feeding that just isn’t right for them.

If you want to have some books handy for when you come home with baby, go for the ones that don’t push a particular style of parenting. I personally found the ‘What to Expect’ series helpful as it includes practical advice, without judgement.

preparing for a baby
“I personally found the ‘What to Expect’ series helpful as it includes practical advice, without judgement.” Image via iStock.

4. iPads.

These devices are a great way to entertain older kids when they’re in the car or bored at a restaurant. But babies don’t need them. They are stimulated enough by the world around them, after all they are seeing everything for the first time. There’s plenty of time for electronics later in life.

5. Wipe warmers.

These are right up there with electric snot suckers. Babies have survived for centuries without the caress of a gently warmed bum wipe. Unless you live in a snow-covered-cabin in Alaska, your baby will be fine too.

What baby items did you find most useful?

Here are some of our favourite celebrity babies for your viewing pleasure: